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Hill Talk: As Postal Museum Expands, Brewing Co. to Move

The Capitol City Brewing Co. will close its doors at its Capitol Hill location in March or April to allow for an expansion of the Smithsonian National Postal Museum.

The brewing company’s lease in the Federal City Post Office Building is up in May, said Debi Wharton, Capitol City’s assistant general manager. The doors will close early so the company can move the brewing equipment to its downtown D.C. and Arlington, Va., locations.

“It’s sad but true,” Wharton said. “There isn’t a lot we can do about it, especially if you’re going to make a museum of the space.”

The brewing company has been at 2 Massachusetts Ave. NE for
16 years. Management is looking into other Capitol Hill locations for the brewery and restaurant, but nothing has been decided.

Wharton said they are concerned about leaving the immediate area near Union Station because there are few sit-down restaurants in the area.

Doors Are Closing

The Library of Congress’ Great Hall, exhibitions and shop in the Thomas Jefferson Building will close to the public at 3 p.m. Friday for a special event.

Also closing early are the west main doors facing First Street Southeast and the tunnel from the LOC to the Capitol Visitor Center.

The building will resume normal hours Saturday.

A Reader’s Paradise

The Library of Congress will host the 10th annual National Book Festival on Saturday on the National Mall. This year’s theme is “A Decade of Words and Wonder.” More than 70 authors will be in attendance, including Laura Bush, Isabel Allende, Suzanne Collins, Ken Follet and Craig Robinson.

The festivities are 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., with author presentations and signings scheduled throughout the day.

At the Book Sales Pavilion, readers can pick up copies of their favorite books before heading to the book signings. The Pavilion of States will pay tribute to the literary traditions of the 50 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. territories.

This year’s festival will also be the launching point for the “Gateway to Knowledge,” the LOC’s new mobile interactive exhibit. After the festival, the exhibit will set off on a yearlong tour of 60 cities throughout the United States.

For a complete list of authors and events, visit loc.gov/bookfest.

More Dancing in the Streets

The Barracks Row Fall Festival will be 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday on Eighth Street Southeast between E and I streets. The urban street fair, which usually brings 5,000 to 7,000 people to Barracks Row, will feature midway carnival booths, a petting zoo, antique cars and artists’ booths.

Entertainment will include the Marine Corps color guard, magicians and the Redskins cheerleaders. Marines dressed in historical uniforms will be wandering among the crowd, explaining the history behind their costumes.

This festival will also include the Military Chef’s Cook-Off, which began in 2006. Five chefs from the military and the White House will start cooking at
7 a.m. While they each start with the same ingredients, it’s up to the chefs to decide what they’re going to make.

More details can be found at barracksrow.org.

Prosaic Plants

The Botanic Garden will host a Plant Literacy Festival from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. It has held festivals in the past, but this is the first year that the emphasis has been on plant literacy, spokeswoman Libby Rhoads said. Organizers decided to have the festival Saturday as a tie-in to the National Book Festival on the National Mall, just a block away.

“We’re hoping people see the connection between plants and literature,” she said.

Events include a story in the garden, a discussion about “The Secret Garden” and horticultural therapy, and a discussion about the book, “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.”

Visitors will get the chance to make their own bouquets, sample recipes and win prizes by completing the Plant Literacy Trail.

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